Sunday, July 19, 2020

Do Black Lives Matter?


Do Black Lives Matter? Obviously, one would think. Apparently others would say it depends on whether you are with Black Lives Matter or not. Confused? So am I. 

Before we examine this question, let’s first welcome an old friend back to blogging. T. Paine has returned and revamped savingcommonsense.blogspot.org into Unabashedly American.

He is now posting under the name Darrell Michaels. 

He expressed a few notions about Black Lives Matter, and their protests against racism and police killings of unarmed Black people.

First thing first. Mr. Paine, aka Darrell, is not a racist. Like many of us, he is against “real racism”. (We’ll have to let him define that term for us.)

We have on occasion shared our writings in the past, with added commentary. I’d like to welcome him back and show my appreciation by doing so again.

Once again our friend has given us interesting points to consider and discuss.

Here is his recent post on Black Lives Matter:
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Black lives matter. Absolutely they do! The amount of melanin in one’s skin pigmentation does not add nor diminish to the inherent dignity and worth of any human life.  Of course, black lives matter.  The phrase itself is uncontroversial and inarguable to my mind. Every person is a child of God and created in His image.  As such, racism is a sin and a pernicious evil that is not to be tolerated by decent people of any color.


Now, the organization of Black Lives Matter is another thing altogether.  They are founded by self-professed “trained Marxists” who seem bent on destroying capitalism, religion, social mores, the nuclear family, and the very foundation of America.   One prominent Black Lives Matter leader told a news reporter just two weeks ago that the group is willing to embrace violence.  And they have proven this repeatedly in the ensuing weeks.  

Black Lives Matter (the organization) is not about black lives.  They could not care less about the dozens of black people killed every single week in Chicago, Baltimore, Seattle, Minneapolis, New York, Los Angles, and elsewhere in our country at the hands of others that aren’t police officers.  (Every city of which is governed by Democrats, but that is an entirely different matter… or not.)  They certainly don’t do ANYTHING to help improve the lives of Americans of color.  Indeed, if they wanted to help black Americans, they would realize that capitalism, faith, and the rule of law has brought unparalleled prosperity and peace to people of color in this country, especially in the past three years.  But BLM, the organization, only wants to foster hate and division when a black person is killed by a police officer.  It is a pretext for “burning the whole thing down” as one member said.

If a police officer is wrong in using deadly force on ANYONE, I am right there with you in protest and demanding justice --- just like every other decent American is, regardless of color.  What the rioting, burning, looting, shooting, and destruction of property largely by snot-nosed suburban white kids marching under the BLM banner does is to harm this cause for justice.  They are not about justice.  They want an excuse to engage in chaos, anarchy, and mayhem.  That turns the vast silent majority of Americans against them specifically and dilutes a just message by righteous protesters that then becomes lost in the ashes of rioting.

Further, the idiot rioters further prove their ignorance of history, or perhaps just display the fact that they don’t give a damn about it, as they tear down or vandalize statues of Fredrick Douglas, Abraham Lincoln, Ulysses S. Grant, Columbus, and even a damned statue of an elk in Portland last week.  A freaking elk!  I was not aware that the elk were the most racist creatures in the forest.  The bottom line is that this not about black lives mattering.  It is about furthering a Marxist, godless agenda.
Teaching our kids that racism is a pernicious evil is the responsibility of all good parents.  Teaching them or allowing them to be taught that Marxist antifa and BLM groups which espouse violence and have very little to do with denouncing actual racism is a gross abrogation of parental duties.

I know this nonsense is commonplace as taught in our schools and colleges by teachers and professors with a militant leftist agenda these days.  America is always bad to these people and they indoctrinate and infect our students with this verifiably false load of crap.  Truth is the very first casualty in this socialist revolution that is bound to fail.

Sadly, there is real racism in America, but it is far more the exception than the rule.  It is NOT systemic, even in nearly all of the police forces throughout our nation.  We should be concentrating on eradicating real racism through an education of actual facts of history and current events instead of made-up and debunked agenda-driven programs like the 1619 project and BLM rhetoric.  How does a nation elect a black president and people of color to all offices throughout this country if it is overwhelmingly racist?  

What happened to George Floyd was horrific.  That said, the officers involved were fired, jailed, and will face punishment for their parts in his murder.  Every single decent person that saw that video agrees with that, regardless of color.  Mr. Floyd did not deserve to die and I fully support the righteous anger of the PEACEFUL protesters to that purpose.  They are preaching to the choir though, as I said, every decent person already agrees with them. 

We achieve nothing when Americans are busy hating America. Further violating the rule of law will only usher in a new Jacobian version of the “French revolution” here on American soil, except the ending for the radicals will be much different here.  Despite what the progressives teach in schools these days, there is a distinct difference between the American Revolution and the French Revolution.  Our revolution led to a representative republic based on the ideal that all men are created equal.  The French revolution, which the mob today is emulating, led to the Reign of Terror.  

It is heart-wrenchingly sad when so many ignorant, arrogant, and thuggish people want to burn down the nation simply so they can “govern” over the ruins.  The overwhelmingly vast majority of Americans are better than that, and while once again we are a sleeping giant, the righteous anger of Americans of all colors will eventually cause us to stand up and protect this divided nation from a small vocal and dangerous minority of anti-American would-be insurrectionists from within.  The first step is for good people to stand up together and say enough.  History has proven in past such incidents that We The People will indeed do so. 
~~~~~~~~ 
(I'm not sure I could reassure our friend that protesting against racism and police brutality will not result in a reign of terror and guillotines for aristocrats. This is a deep-rooted fear that has long haunted the rich and powerful, as well as their minions. What I could do was offer some questions, facts and perspective.)


My reply:

Darrell,
Thank you for providing some food for thought.

I’m glad you and I are opposed to racism. We share that value.

What we don’t share is the desire to blame BLM and Black people for racism and to minimize and deny the existence of systemic racism. Ask African American drivers if they feel unsafe when stopped for “driving while Black”. Ask African American voters if they have equal access to voter registration and polls. Ask African Americans if they are under more suspicion and mistrust than white people.

The Republican Party is actively targeting them to suppress their right to vote. This reality has been established in the courts.

I noticed you hold Martin Luther King Jr. in high regard. Are you aware that conservatives of the day accused him of being a communist?  Have you noticed many progressive figures in history were condemned by conservatives, only later to be recognized for their contributions?

It was conservative people who opposed the Revolution. It was conservative people who opposed emancipation. It was conservative people who opposed women’s right to vote.

It was conservative people who opposed the Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act. Today’s conservative people oppose Constitutional taxes, regulation of commerce, and providing for the general welfare. Today’s conservative people oppose public education and public healthcare.

I wonder if you might care to extrapolate from this some time. You may see your “heritage” more clearly.

It seems very difficult for you to separate BLM protesters from looters and vandals. It is tempting to paint them all with the same stroke, isn’t it?

Why not cite evidence of “trained Marxists who seem bent on destroying capitalism, religion, social mores, the nuclear family, and the very foundation of America”?

They are protesting racism and police brutality. If that is “Marxist”, why do you agree with them on this? Can you cite evidence where BLM has done something to “destroy” capitalism, religion, social mores, the nuclear family, and the very foundation of America”?

I suspect this is your “feeling”, rather than evidence based conclusion.

“Black Lives Matter (the organization) is not about black lives.  They could not care less about the dozens of black people killed every single week in Chicago, Baltimore, Seattle, Minneapolis, New York, Los Angles, and elsewhere in our country at the hands of others that aren’t police officers.  (Every city of which is governed by Democrats, but that is an entirely different matter… or not.) “

“Not about Black lives”. Wow. No evidence was offered to support this wild accusation. “They could not care less about the dozens of black people killed...” Wow, again. Same lack of evidence. These are powerful, cruel, and very demonizing accusations. Any racist would love to regurgitate these accusations. I think you are horribly wrong.

“Every city of which is governed by Democrats...” is yet another racist trope, endlessly repeated everywhere from Breitbart and Limbaugh to Storm Front. Absent from this criticism are the cities governed by Republicans. San Diego, Jacksonville, Fort Worth, El Paso, Oklahoma City, Tulsa, Omaha, and Miami all have similar urban issues. The fact you must selectively ignore this fact reveals a strong and misinformed bias on your part.

But you wish to blame only Democrats. Your bias is crystal clear here.

“One prominent Black Lives Matter leader told a news reporter just two weeks ago that the group is willing to embrace violence.  And they have proven this repeatedly in the ensuing weeks”.

No context or evidence was given. Blaming a mostly peaceful group for the actions of a few vandals is quite authoritarian. What makes you conclude he spoke for the entire group? Surely you must have troves of evidence to show “the group” espoused willingness to embrace violence. As I saw it, there were white punks throwing stuff at cops and vandalizing property. White supremacists were found to be acting as agent provocateurs They’re not BLM, are they? Why not blame them?

I also saw dozens of cases of police brutality. Elderly citizens were knocked to the pavement, soaking it in their blood. Peaceful protesters were gassed and assaulted by Barr’s thugs BEFORE curfew to allow Trump’s “Bible photo op”’. The list grows. Why not blame them?

Why do you need to ignore all that police violence? “Bad apples” spoil the entire barrel, you know.

“It is a pretext for “burning the whole thing down” as one member said.”

If this was about Greater New York Black Lives Matter president Hawk Newsome's interview on FOX(R), it is deceptively presented. 

Newsome told the host, "I said, if this country doesn't give us what we want, then we will burn down this system and replace it. All right? And I could be speaking ... figuratively. I could be speaking literally. It's a matter of interpretation.”

Racists and fearful conservatives take it literally. So do you. Fact: It CANNOT be literally true.

What does BLM want? Equal justice under law and an end to racism. How “un-American” is that? Is that “Marxism”, and if so, why do you also support it?

Did you know Newsome also said, “I love the Lord, and my Lord and savior” in response to an MLK quote? There goes your unfounded accusation about their “war on religion”.

Is conservatism indeed all about beliefs over facts? Meanwhile the death toll is over 140,000 under our “American Carnage President” who minimized and denied the lethal virus.

“...unparalleled prosperity and peace to people of color in this country, especially in the past three years.  But BLM, the organization, only wants to foster hate and division when a black person is killed by a police officer.”

How comforting it must be to ignore Trump’s racist birtherism, his demand for executing the exonerated Central Park kids, and his denying Black renters. Here we have hate and division stoked by a president and leader of the Republican Party.  

It was hate and division that killed those unarmed Black people, not the reaction to it. It is fear of cops when “driving while Black” that reflects hate and division, not the reaction to it. You have it backwards.

I love your MAGA talking point about “especially in the past three years”. If you’re referring to Black unemployment, Obama presided over the largest reduction of it.

Facts:
1. Aug. 2011 the Bush Recession produced Black unemployment rate 16.7%
2. January 2017, the Black unemployment rate was at 7.8 percent.
3. Under Obama the Black unemployment rate dropped of 8.9%

But you praise Trump for a 3.4% drop. The Black guy did all the heavy lifting and got no credit from the racist Birther and his fawning cult. Why do you believe that man?

“Marxist antifa and BLM groups which espouse violence and have very little to do with denouncing actual racism is a gross abrogation of parental duties.”

There you go again with the horrible accusations based on your feelings over facts. Here’s some perspective for you.

Authoritarian, racist, and unqualified cops have killed numerous unarmed people. Antifa and BLM have killed NOBODY. Meanwhile the body count rises from White nationalists and racists. Only ignorance or bigotry can account for disregarding the facts of the matter. But you are obsessed with attacking those who protest the atrocities and racism.

What kind of parent are you?

“There’s very little “real racism”, and racism is all the fault of BLM, Blacks and Obama, not conservative whites and the police”, seems to be your message. I wouldn’t be surprised if your offspring got that impression.

“Sadly, there is real racism in America, but it is far more the exception than the rule.  It is NOT systemic, even in nearly all of the police forces throughout our nation.  We should be concentrating on eradicating real racism through an education of actual facts of history and current events instead of made-up and debunked agenda-driven programs like the 1619 project and BLM rhetoric.  How does a nation elect a black president and people of color to all offices throughout this country if it is overwhelmingly racist?”

If that is a valid point, then so is this: “The election of racist birther Trump proves the country is overwhelmingly racist.”

Nonsense. The election of a Black president only indicated MOST voters were not racists. That’s it. This is a lame deflection employed to minimize racism. See how shallow this reasoning can be?

I understand it is far easier to simply regurgitate Breitbart, Prager and other extremely biased white conservative Trump supporters.

If you want “facts and history” as well as an intelligent discussion of the 1619 Project, I suggest reading this article by Leslie M. Harris, a professor of history at Northwestern University, and historian of African American life and slavery:

I Helped Fact-Check the 1619 Project. The Times Ignored Me.

"The paper’s series on slavery made avoidable mistakes. But the attacks from its critics are much more dangerous."

But then, what’s the point? In your view, educators and historians are all commies unless they are conservative and blame BLM for violence and racism.

“I fully support the righteous anger of the PEACEFUL protesters”

...Unless they’re BLM. THAT is your message.

For some reason you need to smear all the kind and peaceful people of the movement. How is that any different from someone saying, “All Trump voters and supporters are racists.”

What you are doing is fortifying that argument, whether you see it or not.

“We achieve nothing when Americans are busy hating America.”

I couldn’t agree more.

Isn’t that what Trump rallies are all about? Remember “Democrats hate America”, all the Confederate flags, “Lock her up!”, and “I’d rather be Russian than a Democrat” images?

“Our revolution led to a representative republic based on the ideal that all men are created equal”. 

An ideal is not a reality. Women and blacks couldn’t vote and slave owners imposed the electoral college that still deprives us of "one man one vote" equality. Women and blacks are still under-represented. No group has more representation in the Senate than small population states with mostly white and rural people.

All men may have been created equal, but conservatism has assured they are not equal in life, whether at the polls or by representation. You know this is true.

You conclude by defining BLM as a “dangerous minority of anti-American would-be insurrectionists from within”. Right. Because they protest racism and police brutality. Never mind thugs in blue knock elderly citizens to the pavement, assault peaceful demonstrators, and mace children, etc.

Would it hurt the Right to understand there would be NO BLM or antifa if not for racism, minority voter suppression, and police brutality? No. It’s far easier to minimize racism, blame it on Black people, and ignore injustice and police brutality. As (commenter) Vincent’s wife stated, “White people don’t understand”.

It is always interesting that only conservative white people deny systemic racism, while they claim the authority to define and minimize “real racism”. Instead they blame Obama and BLM for racism. This is what all white racists do. From Trump down to his rebel flag waving militia nuts, Proud Boys, 3%’ers, and other racist hate groups.

I don’t believe you are one of them, but I would be very concerned for one’s true values or scope of understanding when they agree with these racists.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 

Just a concluding note. My Twitter theme of late has been featuring the following statements:

Racism is not racism to racists.

A cult is not a cult to a cult.

I'm not sure if these have anything to do with this post or not...




7 comments:

TB3 said...

"Black Lives absolutely matter, but..." - Paraphrase of people who don't actually believe Black Lives Matter.

Darrell Michaels said...

You are confused, Dave? Come now... I think you may be trying to hoodwink us. :)

I absolutely believe that black lives matter. All people of color must be afforded the same rights, respect, and dignities that every other person has. All people of good will should work to defend those rights and dignities as we combat racism wherever it is found.

I do not support BLM the organization because its agenda isn't simply about helping black lives. It is about destroying capitalism, "disrupting" the nuclear family, supporting the abolishing of police and prisons, championing the LGBTQ community and anything that destroys "heteronormativity", and of course the boycotting and divestment from the "racist apartheid regime" of Israel. In other words, the people associated with BLM the organization have ideas that far exceed ending racism and are frankly anti-American in their breadth, scope, and character.

The KKK claims to be for the advancement for white Americans and yet I fully-throatedly denounce their hate, racism, and anti-American ways too.

Hope that helps clarify my position, my friend.

Darrell Michaels said...

TB3, "but..."

Who said "but". I said black lives absolutely and inarguably matter very much.

BLM (the organization) does not matter to me as they are Marxist, anti-police, anti-nuclear family, anti-faith, and anti-American.

I can support without caveat the former while not liking or supporting the latter without any contradiction whatsoever.

I can say and believe that white lives matter without supporting the evil organization of the KKK that also thinks white lives matter.

Do you see the difference, my friend? ;)

TB3 said...

Black Lives Matter, but... the organization! That's what I'm going to hark about! Yeah, the organization!

It's funny how I missed the part on the organization's website that clearly states what the stand for and believe where they espoused marxism, anti-faith and anti-American messages. Anti-Police? I wouldn't phrase it that way, but sure, Anti-Police brutality and Anti-Police Violence and Anti-Police racism. Yeah, sure. Anti-Nuclear Family? Because they're promoting a 'It Takes a Village' approach to dealing with broken homes? I also don't get the 'Championing the LGBTQ community (as if that is a bad thing?) and how that destroys your heternormativity (again, as if this is some kind of bad thing that affects you one iota, unless... of course... it makes you question something about yourself?). I definitely missed the part of their beliefs that makes them anti-Israel (also, again, not really sure how that affects you if they were but that's a whole 'nother political rabbit hole that "conservatives"/"evangelicals" like to dig themselves into)

It's cool that you believe in Black Lives Matter. It'd be cooler if you wrote something about in a more positive light. That's kinda, really, what my point was. Black Lives Matter, but... now that I got that formality out of the way, I'm going to spend the rest of my blogpost defining what you think BLM is, what you think brings black prosperity, and ragging on the 'Organization'. Instead of, you know, all the stuff that happened which brought about the organization's genesis.

Dave Dubya said...

If I may insert more accurate framing and context.

"BLM (the organization) does not matter to me as (I believe) they are Marxist, anti-police, anti-nuclear family, anti-faith, and anti-American."

None of these accusations are shown to be true if one actually read BLM's stated beliefs.

Conservatism is social/political belief system, not a science based, humanitarian, rational philosophy.

Much of their belief system requires falsely and negatively portraying the beliefs and characteristics of the millions of humans and conditions unfamiliar to their world view.

Dave Dubya said...

TB3,
Past interactions would indicate we have heard the last on this subject from Darrell.

Let's look at his words again. This time, let's ask our selves if it would be exactly what white nationalists, Trump, the Daily Caller and the KKK would declare:

"BLM (the organization) does not matter to me as they are Marxist, anti-police, anti-nuclear family, anti-faith, and anti-American."

“But BLM, the organization, only wants to foster hate and division...Black Lives Matter (the organization) is not about black lives. They could not care less about the dozens of black people killed every single week...The bottom line is that this not about black lives mattering. It is about furthering a Marxist, godless agenda... Thuggish people...espouse violence and have very little to do with denouncing actual racism.”


Not that our buddy is a racist, but I would wager a Franklin portrait to grass clippings most African Americans would agree these are the words of a racist.

My other question would be along these lines:

How would a person of conscience feel if his words aligned with white nationalists, Trump, and KKK?

Sadly, I can safely predict this question will very likely go unanswered. It would require an examination of facts AND a conscience.

Neither are reflected in those hateful words.

Darrell probably won't allow my reaction to another comment of similar white authoritarian bias. So here it is:
~~~
"But BLM and Antifa don't care about blacks as human beings."~ Rain

It is sad to see such a hateful and false framing of groups of people who would not be protesting, and not even existing, if not for police brutality and other American expressions of fascism.

It comes off as demonizing Trumpian projection like "Democrats hate freedom/America".

Compare the body count of white supremacists and police to the victims of BLM and antifa. I'll help. The latter groups have killed NO ONE!

White anger, fear, and hate are so easy to minimize and project unto others. This is why so many words here are targeting not the perpetrators of police and racist violence and killings, but those who protest them.
~~~

Again I have to resort to a point I have been making a lot lately.

If you think Obama, (or BLM, or any minority group) aggravated racial tensions,
and if you don’t think Trump, Breitbart(white nationalist Steve Bannon), Daily Caller(white nationalist Tucker Carlson), Charlottesville "Unite the Right" rally organizers Jason Kessler and Richard Spencer, and the rest of the alt-Right aggravated racial tensions...Maybe, just maybe... You might be a racist.

Racism is not racism to racists.

Or would that be, "Racism isn't 'real racism' to racists"?

Perhaps in special cases?

Or, if it quacks like a duck...







Dave Dubya said...

I was right about Darrell not wanting to publish my reaction to the hateful comment by Rain. Authoritarians are like that.

Darrell has cut me out of the conversation at his blog, so I'd like to share his reaction to my response to his "NOT racist", diatribes, hate, demonization and false accusations for BLM.

"I am dealing with a conundrum. I do not want to perpetuate the nonsense with which I used to deal with on my past blog, but I am loathe to squelch free speech too. Mr. Dubya wrote a comment that was the size of a Tolstoy novel and contained many of his un-supported assertions, misguided notions, and flat-out inaccuracies."

Besides all that projection, did Darrell offer any evidence or facts to indicate what exactly was misguided or false in my response?

No. How could he? I appealed to his humanity and presented facts that counter his extreme far Right indoctrination. As expected, it only drew more anger.

As usual all he could do was throw out random quotes from a few people associated with BLM, as well as claims by a known bigot, that somehow proves Black lives DO NOT MATTER to BLM.

How hateful must one be to promote such a blatantly false and vile condemnation?

I've also shown a case where a peaceful Navy vet was brutally attacked by thugs in uniform, to contrast his one-sided view of the protesters.

Of course it was rejected out of hand. Only hate, accusations, demonization and lies regarding BLM are tolerated.

This is the con-servative view. What can change their willful ignorance, bigotry and hate for those not in their cult? Only finding a conscience, understanding the nature and consequences of Right wing hate, injustice for minorities, and police brutality. This would require them to honestly examine their beliefs and be open to the facts that contradict those beliefs.

Of course, all of this is contrary to the nature of the authoritarian personality.